Clarity Award

Recognize leaders advancing the rights of LGBT people, engage others within our profession to extend recognition and respect for LGBT people and advocate for equality for LGBT people.


Sponsor: Division 44


The division offers this award in conjunction with the National LGBTQ Task Force to recognize leaders who embody the core standards and ethics of our profession while advancing the rights of LGBT people, engage others within our profession to extend recognition and respect for LGBT people and advocate for equality for LGBT people through collaboration with professional and civil rights organizations.

How to Apply

Annual deadline: March 30

Please send nominations electronically to Div. 44. Include a CV and a nomination letter that addresses the nominee's qualifications for the award.

Past Recipients


Anthony Romero, JD, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union


The Arcus Foundation


Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, Los Angeles, Calif.


Kevin M. Cathcart, JD, Lambda Legal


The 2012 winner of the award is the National Center for Transgender Equality and its Executive Director Mara Keisling.

Mara Keisling founded the National Center for Transgender Equality in 2003. In the 10 years since the organization began Mara and her staff have worked to change a number of policies that make this country a more welcome place for its transgender citizens. Mara and NCTE are leading the way in doing the work that needs to be done to protect transgender people. In partnership with the National Gay Lesbian Task Force, NCTE launched a massive online survey in 2008 that explored the discrimination experiences of transgender people. The survey was completed by over 6,000 people. Results show that nearly every person (97% of the respondents) had experienced discrimination in one or more areas of their life. In addition to the day-to-day work of NCTE Mara has also developed an annual Lobby Days program. This program has been held for the past 4–5 years. Transgender people from across the country come to Washington, DC, to participate in two days of training in preparation for visits to their members of Congress. Mara’s work is well respected in the transgender community and she is a fierce supporter of the rights of transgender people. Because of her work, transgender people have many more protections in place than they did 10 years ago. This can help to alleviate some of the stressors associated with social and medical transition experiences.


The recipient of this year’s Clarity Award is Rachel Tiven, Esq., Executive Director of Immigration Equality. Until 1990 non-citizen gay people were not even allowed to enter the United States. As Rachel Tiven said in an interview for a book, “There was a commitment to excluding ‘sexual deviants’ and ‘psychopathic personalities.’ Since that law was repealed, you can now enter the country as an individual gay person. But you still can’t act gay! You can’t bring anyone with you, and you can’t fall in love with anyone while you’re here.” This is the ridiculous state of affairs for same-sex bi-national couples in 2011 and the organization Immigration Equality is trying to correct this. Immigration Equality (or the Lesbian and Gay Immigration Rights Task Force, as it was first called), led by Rachel Tiven since 2005 as its first executive director, has grown under her leadership. They have tripled in size, staff, and budget. They have 30 national law firms, doing 6 million dollars of pro bono legal work a year. They get over 2,000 people a year contacting them for help.

From full-time theatre techie, to reporter and TV producer for Bloomberg Business News, to world traveler, to a degree in comparative religion at Harvard, to a law degree at Columbia University, to a member of Lambda Legal Defense Fund’s media team, to Legal Aid Society of NY, to LGIRTF board member, to IE Executive Director—Rachel has a an eclectic career that has provided her with the diverse background to be supremely successful in her current position. She has a passion for this work and it shows.

She lives in New York City with her partner of many years, Sally Gottesman, and their three children.


The Honorable Jerry Sanders, Mayor of San Diego, California


Brent Hawkes, DMin


Brent Hawkes, DMin — We are delighted to recognize the man primarily responsible for the legalization of same-sex marriages in Canada, Brent Hawkes, DMin Reverend Hawkes received his Master of Divinity (1986) and Doctor of Ministry (2001) degrees from Trinity College, an Anglican institution at the University of Toronto. In 2007, Rev. Hawkes was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada, Canada's highest civilian honor. It was created by Queen Elizabeth II and awarded to Canadians who have contributed greatly to Canadian society locally, provincially, and nationally. Reverend Hawkes is the first LBGT activist to be received into the order.

In addition to his advocacy work on LGBT issues, he has supported anti-racist initiatives, drawn attention to poverty and poor housing, and advocated the ordination of female priests. He has served for over three decades as pastor of Metropolitan Community Church of Toronto for LGBT parishioners. His church serves a faith community for about 575 congregants and its Christmas Eve service attracts some 4,000 people, making it the largest Christmas Eve service in Canada. On Jan. 14, 2001, Reverend Hawkes gained national and international attention by performing a wedding ceremony for two same-sex couples at the Metropolitan Community Church. The government did not endorse the marriages and the city clerk refused to register the record of marriage, which led to a court battle.

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled that the marriages performed by Hawkes were legal but stayed its opinion pending a possible appeal. On June 10, 2003, the Court of Appeal for Ontario affirmed this, thus immediately striking down all barriers against same-sex marriage in the province. Reverend Hakes lives in Toronto with John Sproule, his partner of more than twenty years. They married on March 7, 2006.

Nathalie Gilfoyle, JD, APA General Counsel — It is with pride and gratitude that we grant Nathalie Gilfoyle this year's Clarity Award. Ms. Gilfoyle has been General Counsel for the American Psychological Association since 1996. Since then, she has contributed substantially to the advancement of civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons.

Perhaps it is both ironic and fitting that one of psychology's major contributors to the rights of LGBT persons in the United States is an attorney. Ms. Glifoyle's interest in the intersection of psychology and the law has been evident from the very beginning of her career. This interest has developed into a focus on psychology's impact on public policy issues, including juvenile justice, the death penalty, competency issues, minority rights, and most prominently, discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Her numerous amicus briefs, which are grounded in psychological science related to LGBT issues, represent the ultimate application of our research in promoting civil rights. In particular, since assuming the role of general counsel in 1996, Ms. Gilfoyle has filed 21 amicus briefs in cases involving parental, adoptive and custodial rights, gay marriage, sodomy laws, and anti-discrimination statutes in support of LGBT individuals. In any given year, her work on our behalf comprises 50-75 percent of her office's total portfolio.

Most notably, Justice Anthony Kennedy cited Ms. Gilfoyle's work extensively in his pivotal US Supreme Court opinion on the Lawrence v. Texas case, which struck down that state's antiquated and inhumane sodomy statutes. Her amicus brief in the recent California gay marriage case received the lengthiest quote in the opinion, permitting gay marriage, as well as designates LGBT individuals as a "suspect class" for the purposes of California law and social policy. Ms. Gilfoyle's brief in the Amendment 2 case, which struck down Colorado's repressive gay discrimination ordinance, was central to the majority opinion. This decision helped put an end to the numerous ballot initiatives across the country which seek to prohibit anti-discrimination legislation in housing and employment; protections on which we rely every day. Ms. Gilfoyle's voice was also crucial in striking down a bizarre and cruel Arkansas statute that prohibited foster parents from assuming custodial responsibilities if a gay person resided in the home. In short, her work has been nothing short of life changing for millions of LGBT individuals all across the country.

In addition to her work as APA's General Counsel, Ms. Gilfoyle serves the public and her profession in various ways. She is serving her second term on the Board of Governors of the District of Columbia Bar Association. Recently, she was appointed by the DC Court of Appeals to serve as a member of its Equal Access to Justice Commission, addressing the unmet legal needs of the District's poor. Additionally, she is a mediator for the US District Court of DC, an arbitrator for the DC Bar Attorney-Client Arbitration Board, and a Board member for the Wendt Center for Loss and Healing.

Nathalie Gilfoyle is a true champion in the struggle for LGBT equality. "Champion" is a descriptor from which she demurs. She has stated that the work itself, and the tremendous advances to which it has contributed, is reward enough. However, it is time to reward this Champion publicly, and proclaim our gratitude on behalf of LGBT persons, partners, and parents within our Association, for those we educate and treat, and for all those uplifted by the promotion of justice in our society.


Lori Valencia Greene, MS 
Ms. Valencia Greene is a Senior Legislative and Federal Affairs Officer with the American Psychological Association's (APA) Public Policy Office. In this and prior capacities she has actively lobbied on Capitol Hill for LGBT individuals and persons living with HIV/AIDS. She spearheaded APA's lobbying on key pieces of legislation such as the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, and hate crimes legislation. She has generously shared her skills through advocacy training with APA governance groups and other allied organizations such as the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, the National Black Women's Health Project, and the National Minority AIDS Council. In 1996 Ms. Greene founded the Policy Action Network for Women Living with HIV/AIDS. She co-chaired the Advisory Committee for the Black Religious Summit on Sexuality, entitled, "Breaking the Silence," which was sponsored by the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice for five years. She received the Coalition's Judy Halperin "Making a Difference Award." Among her other distinctions is the 2001 Congressional Black Caucus' "Health Care Hero Award."

Clinton Anderson, PhD
Anderson serves as the Director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Concerns Office within the American Psychological Association's (APA) Public Interest Directorate and has just celebrated his twentieth anniversary with the organization. He has vigorously advocated for LGBT issues on several fronts and has been a model and mentor for many LGBT psychologists within APA governance. Beginning in the late 1980s he spearheaded the adoption of amicus briefs which challenged the constitutionality of denying reenlistment to military personnel who declared a homosexual orientation. His efforts have contributed to the national conversation on this issue and APA's adoption of a resolution in 2004 objecting to the discriminatory policy of "Don't Ask Don't Tell." Dr. Anderson's lobbying efforts led to passage of the Hate Crimes Statistics Act which is the first federal statute to recognize the categories of gay, lesbian, and bisexual people. By bringing together national stakeholders the CDC funded Healthy Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Students Project was inaugurated which is designed to strengthen the capacity of our nation's schools to prevent behavioral health risks for lesbian, gay, and bisexual students. His office has been responsible for more than a decade of public education and advocacy on behalf of lesbian and gay parenting

Last updated: December 2020Date created: August 2014